California CIO to Head IT for Defense Dept.

California CIO Teri Takai, who was to oversee the state's major data center consolidation, has been nominated to head IT operations for the Department of Defense.

Remember that huge, fast-paced data center consolidation outlined by Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger for the state of California's data centers? The executive in charge of that consolidation may be heading to Washington. California state CIO Teri Takai has been appointed by Pres. Barack Obama to serve as Assistant Secretary (Networks and Information Integration) for the Department of Defense.

Last month Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger signed an executive order directing California state agencies reduce the total amount of data center square footage currently they use by 25 percent by July, and by 50 percent by July 2011. The order sets in motion a massive, fast-moving data center consolidation of the 400 data centers and server rooms, which span 400,000 square feet of space and house more than 9,500 servers.

But now Takai, who was directing the consolidation, is apparently off to Washington, pending a successful Senate confirmation.

Takai has lengthy credentials as an IT consolidator. Prior to her appointment in California, Takai served as Director of the Michigan Department of Information Technology (MDIT), and merged the state's IT operations into one centralized department to service 19 agencies and over 1,700 employees. Before serving in state government, Takai worked for the Ford Motor Company for 30 years, where she led the development of the company's information technology strategic plan, as well as earlier posts at EDS and Federal-Mogul Corporation.

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